The Capital Regional District (CRD) is required by legislation to develop a financial plan each year that represents operating and capital expenditures for the next five years. These plans provide a longer-term focus regarding the resources required to deliver programs and services needed by the community, and to accomplish Board priorities.

Service Planning

Each term, the Board sets the strategic priorities, policy and direction that guide the activities of the organization. The proposed financial plan incorporates the delivery of work and execution of priorities and initiatives that are identified in the planning cycle and as part of the strategic and corporate plans for the CRD. Community Need Summaries outline anticipated activities for the year ahead, subject to review by the Board in open meetings.

Financial Planning

A provisional financial plan is prepared based on outcomes of the service planning process as well as input received. Collectively, the financial planning process includes recommendations and direction from over 60 commissions and advisory committees as well as the Capital Regional Hospital District and Capital Region Housing Corporation Boards, which are administered by the CRD.

Unlike other forms of government, regional districts cannot move funds into general revenue or repurpose funds for use across services. Each service has its own proposed expenses and funding sources, and cannot show a deficit in any year. As each service must be accounted for and reported on separately, the CRD Financial Plan consists of more than 200 individual service budgets.

Under direction provided by the Board, review and recommendation for approval for all local service budgets is delegated to the Electoral Areas Committee (EAC) including the review of Local Service Commission budgets. This process includes a significant amount of work undertaken by many appointed commissioners who volunteer their services in the Southern Gulf Islands, Salt Spring Island, and Juan de Fuca electoral areas.

Commissions and committees receive input leading up to the preparation of all preliminary regional and sub-regional budgets in the form of user statistics, customer satisfaction surveys, advisory body reports, annual operational reports and from a wide variety of public engagement activities. Local and sub-regional commissions may also include rate payer representatives.

The provisional plan is subject to changes as a result of year-end adjustments, payments in lieu of taxes, revised assessment information, and other committee or commission-directed amendments prior to approval. Approval of the provisional Financial Plan enables the organization to effectively deploy resources needed to maintain core service delivery and advance capital projects required to support development and population growth across the region.